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Many businesses hire in phases, or even only when roles need to be filled, but the talent acquisition process allows for continual recruitment throughout the entire calendar year. What is talent acquisition in HR? Defined, talent acquisition, meaning recruitment, is a core human resources activity. It involves the process of identifying and attracting qualified candidates for positions within an organization. Talent acquisition involves everything from sourcing and screening potential employees to onboarding them once they are hired. The goal of talent acquisition is to bring the right people into the organization to fill key roles and help the business achieve its objectives. In addition, talent acquisition also includes activities such as career fairs, employer branding, executive search, and recruitment analytics. Talent acquisition is a crucial activity for organizations as it helps ensure that the right people are in place to meet their needs and goals.
When human resources departments develop a talent acquisition strategy, finding candidates that are right for the company, as well as top talent, becomes a simpler and more streamlined process. Discovering top talent is a more involved process than putting out a job ad and hoping for the best; that is where a talent acquisition process comes into play. When hiring teams want to ensure that they are attracting top talent to their talent pool, they begin to recognize the importance of employing a dedicated recruiting process continually. While this can be more complicated, in the sense that talent acquisition is ongoing, it can also make the individual hiring process flow much more smoothly. In short, the difficulties balance themselves out.
There are five key steps to the talent acquisition process which should be acknowledged and followed by your human resources or hiring team. They are:
1. Developing a Talent Acquisition Strategy: Crafting an effective strategy for talent acquisition is the foundation for any successful recruitment process. Your strategy should include developing a clear understanding of your company’s hiring needs and objectives, as well as outlining how you intends to locate and attract top talent.
2. Locating Talent: Once the hiring strategy is in place, the next step is to identify potential sources of talent. This includes online job boards, employee referral programs, university recruiting programs, recruiting events, industry conferences, etc.
3. Screening Candidates: Screening candidates is a critical component of any successful talent acquisition process. Employers should develop an effective screening process that uses pre-screening interviews, assessments, and background checks to ensure they are hiring the best person for the job.
4. Making Offers: Once you have found the right candidate, it’s time to make an offer. This includes ensuring that the candidate is aware of all the details of the job, as well as any benefits and perks associated with it.
5. Onboarding: The onboarding process is where you get to really show off your company’s culture and values. Making sure new hires are properly trained on their job duties, as well as introducing them to the company’s policies and procedures, are all essential steps of a successful talent acquisition process.
Many of these steps, and more, can be easily managed using your interview intelligence software platform and other programs that have been specifically designed for this purpose.
As you are developing your talent acquisition strategy framework, it’s important to ensure that your team is aware of talent acquisition best practices. What are these best practices that you should be aware of?
Talent acquisition best practices can be broadly classified into two areas:
1. Pre-recruitment processes: This includes such steps as writing the job description, sourcing the talent, tracking the applicants and qualified candidates, as well as other recruitment efforts.
2. Post-recruitment processes: This includes such steps that follow recruitment and related specifically to adding new team members to your company, such as onboarding new hires, orienting them to the company culture and policies, development and training, retention strategies, and even exit strategies.
How are these steps best accomplished?
When developing job postings, your human resources team should ensure that the postings are descriptive and accurate, describing the position as well as the qualities that would make a person the ideal candidate for the position. Posting this job description on the proper channels is key as it ensures that the right candidates will see the job posting and apply. As a part of your talent acquisition strategy, it is important to select which channels are most suitable for your company. These can include websites, social media, job boards, referral programs, staffing agencies, events, and more.
As your team begins receiving applications and inquiries from candidates, you will likely need to begin using an applicant tracking system (ATS) if one is not already in place. This software application is used to quickly evaluate, review, and categorize resumes. This is a useful tool for future hiring as well as current hiring. Keeping your candidates organized can be useful for future job openings, allowing you to utilize data-driven technologies such as predictive analytics or AI-powered algorithms to identify potential talent.
When onboarding, it’s important to develop an effective onboarding process that provides your new hires with all of the information they need to perform their job, sets expectations for them, and ultimately helps them to acclimate quickly to their new role, company culture, and processes. New employee orientations that educate new hires on policies and procedures, as well as culture, can be a useful first step. Your strategy for a new hire can also be the framework for developing a successful exit strategy for your employees. From start (first hearing about the position) to finish (ending employment with your company), your candidates and hires should feel that they are valued members. Your processes are a reflection on your company and set the tone for future candidate acquisition.
Developing your talent acquisition strategy can be an involved process, but ultimately you will be rewarded with a better functioning hiring system. Teams who are looking for how to improve the talent acquisition process will be better equipped in the end to provide an inclusive hiring process to their candidates. Hiring teams enacting a talent acquisition strategy should be aware of the following talent acquisition topics:
1. Recruitment Strategies: Human resources teams should be aware of the different recruitment strategies available, and how best to use them for their organization. This includes topics such as employer branding, using modern recruitment technology, diversifying the candidate pool, and leveraging social media for recruiting.
2. Hiring Process: Teams should also be aware of the hiring process best practices and making sure that this process is fair, effective, efficient, and compliant with the law. This includes topics such as developing job descriptions and postings, creating a hiring timeline, using assessment tools for candidates, conducting interviews effectively, and managing background checks.
3. Employer/Employee Relationship: Teams should also be aware of how to create a positive and productive employer/employee relationship. This includes topics such as designing onboarding processes, providing performance feedback, handling conflict resolution between managers and employees, building an employee recognition program, and offering professional development opportunities.
4. Retention Strategies: Human resources teams should understand the importance of having a strong retention strategy in place. This includes topics such as designing competitive total rewards programs, implementing an effective succession planning program, and developing engagement initiatives to increase employee morale and satisfaction.
5. Compliance: Teams should also be knowledgeable about all relevant labor laws, regulations, guidelines, and policies that apply to their organization. This includes topics such as minimum wage laws, collective bargaining agreements, immigration regulations, and equal employment opportunity guidelines.
6. Diversity: Teams should also be aware of the benefits of having a diverse workplace and how to foster an inclusive environment that welcomes diversity. This includes topics such as understanding implicit bias, creating recruitment strategies to attract a diverse candidate pool, and developing diversity and inclusion initiatives.
7. Technology: Human resources teams should also be well aware of the latest technology trends that can help them be more efficient in their operations. This includes topics such as leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI) for recruiting, using Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), creating digital onboarding processes, and utilizing employee self-service platforms.
8. Data: Teams should also be aware of how to collect and use data to measure the success of their talent acquisition efforts. This includes topics such as understanding key performance indicators (KPIs), creating reports on recruitment metrics, and analyzing trends in employee attrition rate.
As your team seeks to develop a talent acquisition process that is functional and effective, you may begin searching for a good example of talent acquisition strategy in use. While searching the internet for this information can be helpful, it would be an even better idea to speak with or interview other human resources professional who are already implementing innovative talent acquisition strategies to discover what they have learned, what they recommend, what they avoid, and more. Never underestimate the human element when it comes to learning about new strategies and processes as other people have usually already implemented what you are attempting and their wisdom can be gleaned to guide you in your own attempts.
Users of interview intelligence software, like the platform offered by Pillar, can embed their newfound talent acquisition strategies directly into their processes to ensure that no steps are ever skipped or missed. If your team has not already implemented interview intelligence software into your processes, now would be a great time to give it a try as you are creating a new talent acquisition strategy to drive qualified candidates to your company. Interview intelligence software is designed to not only streamline the process and allow you to track your candidates, it can also help to ensure that your hiring process is consistent from one candidate to the next, eliminate bias from your hiring process, and give your team an edge in your top talent acquisition strategy.